Established in 1964, family-owned The Village Bakery CoedPoeth Ltd specialises in freshly crafted bread, rolls and a variety of morning goods. The company prides itself on quality ingredients, all of which are sourced locally.
The Village Bakery are a long-standing user of Fuji flow wrappers, with seven systems already installed across all four production facilities, packing general bakery products and crumpets. Director at The Village Bakery, Christien Jones, has even visited Fuji’s plant in Japan.
Christien contacted Paramount Packaging Systems, Fuji’s distributer for the UK and Ireland, wanting to replace some of their older-style machines with bespoke units to increase capacity and capitalise on the introduction of robot handling technology. Pleased with Fuji’s best-in-class flow wrapping technology, it made sense to go with their form-fill-seal models again.
In a bid to increase efficiencies, reduce labour costs and ensure faster product changeover, Aaron Bessell, Sales Director at Paramount, recommended two Fuji Alpha VII box motion flow wrapping systems, to sit alongside their existing machines, which would be used for the high-speed wrapping of pancakes and blinis.
The two wrappers have been customised to accept robot-placed stacks of various sized pancakes and blinis, which would then be wrapped either with or without flat base and U cards.
The U cards are loaded in the stainless steel flighted infeed, using a Fuji pick and place card feeder, which is mounted alongside the infeed and comprises a high capacity card magazine and low level sensor. The card feeder uses suction arms to pick the flat card from the magazine and place it into the flighted infeed. Once the card is placed into the infeed, the stacks of pancakes are placed onto the cards by their robot loading system.
A rotary card bending device integrated into the infeed ensures the sides of U cards are consistently and accurately ploughed up to form a U shape. The flighted infeed chain is multi-pitched for handling a complete range of products.
The Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP) packs comprise two transverse end seals and a longitudinal centre seal, formed from a single web of gas-tight heat-sealable wrapping material. To ensure production of gas-tight seals, Fuji’s long dwell end seal system was modified so the packs are gas-flushed, using an adjustable gas flush kit, with gas levels within the packs constantly monitored and controlled using a gas analyser.
Additional standard features include a fully adjustable forming box, tighten up device, no-product-no-bag system, excess air purge, Fuji Vision System (FVS), automatic film splicer, discharge rejecter, product-in-jaw detection and gusseting device.
Christien comments: “The first wrapper installed was fully operational within 40 minutes of being unloaded. This, and the subsequent Fuji flow wrappers, has proved ideal for our manufacturing process which encompasses multiple product lines, short runs and constant changeovers. The machines are easy to use with quick product changeover, reliable and consistently perform.
The new flow wrapping lines have helped increase the efficiency of our handling and packaging process with quicker and more accurate product changeover. They have also improved the overall pack quality which has helped reduce product damage and waste.”